playlist 03.10.12- avant-garde pop

This week was a particularly eclectic set, an electronic amalgam of ambient, trip-hop, experimental influences. The only constant was a break from the traditional song structure while maintaining a sense of melodic listenability.  A level of weird, the beauty of the mysterious undiscovered. The patron saints of this show were Can, Stereolab, and Radiohead… our sonic guides!

STEREOLAB cybele’s reverie- emperor tomato ketchup

BONOBO kiara (cosmin TRG remix)- black sands remixed (Remixed album released on February 21st, check out Bonobo’s site and give it a listen! Excellent new takes on a fantastic album. )

KRAFTWERK tour de france- tour de france

CAN oh yeah- tago mago

BORN RUFFIANS i need a life (four tet remix)- dj-kicks

FOUR TET angel echoes (jon hopkins remix)- angel echoes +remixes

RADIOHEAD lotus flower (sbtrkt rmx)- TKOL RMX 1234567

GRIMES oblivion- visions

CHARLOTTE GAINSBOURG paradisco- stage whisper

VITALIC poison lips

Congrats Nick on winning tickets to Vitalic at 103 Harriet!!!!

BLOUSE they always fly away- blouse

BJORK all is full of love- homogenic

APHEX TWIN tha- selected ambient works

BRIAN ENO deep blue day- apollo (atmospheric, dreamy, exactly what a deep blue day feels like)

BURIAL archangel- untrue

PICTURE PLANE gang signs- dark rift

PANTHA DU PRINCE stick to my side four tet remix

STEREOLAB metronomic underground- emperor tomato ketchup

RADIOHEAD electioneering- ok computer

PORTISHEAD roads- dummy

MASSIVE ATTACK  paradise circus (gui borratto remix)- heliogold (wonderful fan vid featuring footage from jean cocteau’s film “blood of a poet”)

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The wistful, bittersweet lure of nostalgia

The term nostalgia describes a yearning for the past, often in idealized form. The word is a learned formulation of a Greek compound, consisting of νόστος (nóstos), meaning “homecoming”, a Homeric word, and ἄλγος (álgos), meaning “pain, ache”.

(Definition via the ever accurate and always trustworthy source of our times, Wikipedia.)

As an admitted nostalgia fiend, there are few things I find pleasure in more than reading a weathered book with someone else’s notes scrawled in the margins, a looped, cursive signature of a stranger on a yellowed LP cover, a ripped tag from a foreign brand on a secondhand, delightfully unique garment. The mystery of discovering the joys of lives once lived, grasping at the small tokens of pleasure that perhaps contributed to a sense of purpose, escapism, longing, beauty… an infinite possibility of meanings, never fully uncovered.

The minutiae of life help to drive us through the daily slog of the mundane, fuel our aspirations, and tell our stories beyond our ultimate demise. In discovering the artifacts of the past, the eternal and the temporal nature of existence is fused together in a moment. I find myself infatuated with the past partially due to to the terminal nature of life, in the dark hope that the minuscule items that contribute to my sense of self will somehow transcend my time kickin’ it as a corporeal being. Our lives are ever changing, constantly moving, but the significance of past histories remains, the ideas behind them will never die.

(Side note: the auditory accompaniment for this article is provided by Aphex Twin’s “Avril 14th”.)

 With that mildly morbid statement said, let’s turn to a more cheerful stance on nostalgia: FLEA MARKETS! Any San Franciscan who loves diggin’ through piles o’ crap in search of hidden treasures should definitely hit up Alemany Flea Market, located just off of the 101 in Bernal Heights. I went on Sunday morning with two good pals, ’70’s Ray-Bans (stolen from my dad) shielding my weary eyes from the harsh winter sun. (Music interjection: have you heard Beach House’s ode to their distaste for the winter sun?) At first, Alemany Flea Market was overwhelming with the sheer quantity of STUFF present, but upon closer inspection, details of loveliness emerged.

One of my luckiest finds: an issue of LIFE magazine from January 9, 1970. Fascinating speculations about the future, analysis of cultural norms, beautiful photography and design aesthetics.

Streisand and a Picasso.

These statistics are from your parents’ lifespans. Illuminating, fascinating, and more than a little   disturbing.

“What sort of society are our computers and computer-oriented society driving us?”

Predictions of androgyny for 1970’s fashion.

Fantastic Rolling Stones book (The First Twenty Years):

LBJ-era political cartoons:

How much has changed, and how much is exactly the same?

San Francisco seems to be an endless treasure trove for individuals who are drawn to the unique histories of the past. Other recommendations for those who love to imagine stories told in the waxy wood grain of weathered bar tops:

Aub Zam Zam: Sip a wicked martini with the 3 pm-Tuesday regulars in this decadently divey Haight locale. The lush red walls, dingy carpets, and gold-encrusted Persian mural behind the bar are the original 1940’s decor… try to find the black-and-white framed photo in the back of this haunt in its heyday!

Cafe Du Nord: Originally opened during the Prohibition era, Cafe Du Nord feels like a hidden relic, a dark-wooded basement gem (featuring an excellent live music roster). In more recent nostalgia news, apparently it was THE place for the late ’80’s gothic scene, with a wildly popular event called “Dark Sparkle”… how intriguing!

St Francis Fountain: Operating continuously since its inception in 1917, this wood-paneled Mission diner evokes the days of the sock-hop while you are served vegan soyrizo and artisanal coffee by attractively grungy servers (how appropriate for the neighborhood). Past ‘n’ present, UNITE!

What are your favorite places to reminisce about a lost time that perhaps never even existed?


playlist 02.11.12- ’90s Warp Records inspired

Listen to this (slightly amended) playlist on Spotify!  Good in a weird way… beautiful with a touch of stomach-churning.

The show was largely influenced by London-based Warp Records, famed for their pioneering electronic catalogue, ranging from ambient to acid house to techno (genres frequently described as ‘intelligent dance music’ (IDM)). Their offerings range from  experimental legend Aphex Twin to CANT, the 2011 side project of Grizzly Bear’s Chris Taylor. This playlist also chronicles my continued infatuation with melodic, melancholic Broadcast (also off of Warp!). I gave away a pair of tickets to Sleigh Bells at Noise Pop… congratulations Pedro, have an ear-splittingly good time!

BROADCAST corporeal- tender buttons

RADIOHEAD little by little- the king of limbs

BOARDS OF CANADA sunshine recorder- geogaddi

THE RADIO DEPT never follow suit

GIL SCOTT HERON i’m new here- i’m new here

ZOMBY alothea- dedication

DCFC codes & keys yeasayer remix

CRYSTAL CASTLES 1991- crystal castles

FLYING LOTUS zodiac shit/ computer face- cosmogramma

MOUSE IN MARS stereomission- iaora tahiri

SQUAREPUSHER theme from sprite- hello everything

APHEX TWIN xtal- selected ambient works

BROADCAST tears in the typing pool- tender buttons

JON BRION phone call- eternal sunshine

TUNE-YARDS real live flesh- real live flesh

GANG GANG DANCE chinese high- eye contact

CANT the edge- cant

BLACK MOTH SUPER RAINBOW forever heavy- dandelion gum

HUNDRED IN THE HANDS  dead ending- the hundred in the hands

SLEIGH BELLS tell ’em- treats

CONGRATS PEDRO YOU WON TICKETS TO SLEIGH BELLS @ NOISEPOP!! yaaaah buddy

TY SEGALL my head explodes- goodbye bread

GRIZZLY BEAR two weeks (fred falke remix)

TYCHO a walk- dive

BROADCAST come on let’s go- the noise made by people

PORCELAIN RAFT talk to me- gone blind

BONOBO light pattern- dial m for monkey

KSCU 103.3 FM // http://www.kscu.org // every other Saturday 1- 3pm